Our Work

 

 

OUR WORK

Since 2012, EHP has conducted more than 550 health evaluations and placed more than 800 air monitoring devices in communities across the United States. We’ve provided guidance to global partners, expanding our reach from southwestern Pennsylvania and across the United States to India and beyond. We have produced first-in-the-nation healthcare-provided generated data on short-term symptoms associated with unconventional oil and gas development (UOGD) and have presented our findings at community hearings, academic research meetings, and to local, state, and federal agencies.

Through timely monitoring, data interpretation, and personalized guidance, we seek to equip residents with the information they need to take immediate protective actions and to advocate for policy changes to protect their communities against the impacts of UOGD. EHP assists communities in collecting data and coordinating personal narratives from local residents in support of local advocacy campaigns. We provide guidance in communicating concerns with policymakers at local, state, and federal levels.

 

RECENT ACHIEVEMENTS

Fractured: The Body Burden of Living Near Fracking (2021)
In March 2021, Environmental Health News (EHN) released a first-rate and cutting-edge investigative report by journalist Kristina Marusic on the health impacts of living near fracking. EHP staff including Dave Brown, Sherry Van Lange, Alison Steele, and Jessa Chabeau, as well as EHP’s former executive director, Raina Rippel, guided EHN in its research.

Report 1 of the Forty-Third Statewide Investigating Grand Jury (2020)
On June 25, 2020, Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro released “Report 1 of the Forty-Third Statewide Investigating Grand Jury,” which examined shale gas operations in the state. The report, as well as AG Shapiro’s press conference releasing it, presented clear evidence that shale gas development puts public health at risk. The report relied extensively upon EHP’s work. The full report is available here.

Community Meeting on Childhood Cancers in SWPA (2019)
Of our accomplishments in Washington County, a notable moment for our organization was the 2019 community meeting we held in Canonsburg, where more than 200 community members met to discuss childhood cancers in the SWPA region. This meeting propelled a movement to open discussions on the topic and encouraged further research on the health impacts of shale gas development.

Down to Earth Feature with Environmentalist Chandra Bhushan (2015)
In July 2015, Chandra Bhushan, one of India's foremost environment and climate change experts, published his interview with EHP representatives in Down to Earth. Down to Earth is a fortnightly magazine covering the politics of environment and development, published in partnership with the Centre for Science and Environment, a nonprofit public interest research and advocacy organization based in New Delhi, India. At the time of this interview, India had just announced a shale gas policy.

Meeting with European Parliament's Committee on Industry, Research, and Energy (2015)
In March 2015, EHP Regional Manager Jessa Chabeau and Nurse Practitioner Leni Resick collaborated with nine members of the European Parliament's Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE) to discuss unconventional natural gas development and associated emerging health effects. ITRE attendees included individuals from Austria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Hungary, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, and the United Kingdom.

 

CURRENT PROJECTS

Environmental HealthWatch Model
EHP’s Environmental HealthWatch Model allows communities to determine the extent of extreme episodic exposures occurring in the vicinity of local compressor stations or other industrial facilities and documents changes in health status over time. This tracking is crucial because these exposures are known to cause harm to the respiratory, cardiovascular, and neurological systems, as well as impair the development of infants and children. Evidence of these periodic, high exposures demonstrates how current air regulations fall short of protecting affected communities.

EHP AirView App
A community pollution reporting app

EHP is in the process of completing a tool for the communities in which we work. The tool will allow community members to view the data collected by their air monitors, including data collected on spikes and peaks, which will provide better guidance on when residents and their children can more safely enjoy time outside.

Beaver Monitoring
Beaver County, PA

EHP is monitoring the situation around the developing Shell cracker plant in Monaca by collecting baseline data against which we can compare pollution impacts once the site becomes operational. The site is anticipated to become operational in 2022.

Belmont Guidance
Belmont County, OH

EHP is currently providing information on an injection well in the county and guiding the community through the process of collecting health impact assessments from local residents.

Cecil Township Monitoring
Washington County, PA
24-hour operations began at the Augustine well pad in Cecil Township on April 2, 2021. The pad hosts four wells. Since 2019, EHP has been monitoring air quality around this location and will monitor for spikes in emissions now that fracking has begun.

Dover Plains Monitoring
Dutchess County, NY
EHP continues to work with the community of Dover Plains, NY around the Cricket Valley power plant. Dover Plains and Slate Hill are the first two groups EHP has trained to use our HealthWatch Model, as well as the first two communities in which monitoring is being conducted surrounding a natural gas power plant.

Ligonier Monitoring
Westmoreland County, PA
Air monitoring in Ligonier is officially underway! The community will host up to ten pairs of air monitors.

Medina Monitoring
Medina County, OH
Since 2019, EHP has served Medina residents with PM2.5 and tVOC monitoring, as well as chemical sampling. We have conducted health surveys of individuals living near the Wadsworth compressor station.

Slate Hill Monitoring
Orange County, NY
Since 2020, EHP has hosted five sets of monitors — sets including both PM2.5 and VOC monitoring devices — in this area, working closely with two local groups, Sustainable Warwick and Protect Orange County. There are several emitters in this area, including the CPV Valley Energy Center and the Minisink compressor station. Slate Hill and Dover Plains are the first two groups EHP has trained to use our HealthWatch Model, as well as the first two communities in which monitoring is being conducted surrounding a natural gas power plant.

Smith Township Monitoring
Washington County, PA
Since 2020, EHP has worked with residents of Smith Township to monitor PM2.5 and tVOC in relation to nearby wells, cryogenic facilities, and compressor stations.

Tompkins Monitoring
Tompkins County, NY
Since 2015, EHP has worked with Tompkins County residents. Currently, four homes in the area host Purple Air monitors. When EHP began working in this area, we collaborated with a local advocacy group, Mothers Out Front. This group was successful in its efforts to reduce emissions from the nearby Borger compressor station, a significant accomplishment for the Tompkins community and the fight against unconventional oil and gas development.

 

PAST PROJECTS

Allegheny County, PA
EHP hosted community meetings with partner organizations to identify locations for local monitoring projects surrounding shale gas development infrastructure across the county. In North Braddock and McKees Rocks specifically, EHP contributed to regional shifts in public perception and understanding of the health impacts of oil and gas development by providing information for the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection's public hearing on the proposed well at the Edgar Thompson Works. EHP also canvassed residential areas in McKees Rocks to educate residents on the MRIE frac sand facility site and its role in localized air pollution.

Belmont County, OH
EHP worked with the FreshWater Accountability Project to provide information and guidance surrounding the planned PTT Global petrochemical buildout along the Ohio River.

Buckingham County, VA
In 2018 and 2019, EHP worked with Friends of Buckingham to place air quality monitors and conduct health surveys in an historically Black community that was slated to have a new compressor station built near their town. Friends of Buckingham successfully fought to have the permit for the compressor station overturned in federal court in January 2020.

Burlington County, NJ
In 2018 and 2019, EHP worked with a task force associated with the town of Chesterfield to conduct a community science project involving baseline air monitoring and health surveys in response to a new compressor station.

Indiana County
EHP created health care professional-focused resources to enable health providers to better understand the levels of air pollution and associated health risks for their local patients.

Kern County, CA
In 2016 and 2017, EHP conducted health and air and water quality monitoring in Lost Hills.

Washington County, PA
We began our work in Washington County in 2012. For nearly 10 years, we have collaborated with Washington County families, residents, and health professionals to defend their health — and their patients' health — against the impacts of shale gas development. Of our accomplishments in Washington County, a notable moment for our organization was the 2019 community meeting we held in Canonsburg, where more than 200 community members met to discuss childhood cancers in the area. This meeting propelled a movement to open discussions on the topic and encouraged local residents to advocate for further conducted research and policy changes.

Westmoreland County, PA
EHP created multiple resources for health care professionals to better understand the levels of air pollution and associated health risks for their patients living in Westmoreland County, and presented at the Westmoreland Medical Society Meeting. We also created resources, specifically on Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials (NORMs) to help local policymakers better understand the health threats to their constituents.

Sandoval County, NM
In 2018 and 2019, EHP worked with Sierra Club member Teresa Seamster and the Navajo Nation to provide air monitoring in a region of oil and gas wells. Local Navajo conducted health surveys and health impact assessments in collaboration with the University of New Mexico School of Medicine. They continue to fight for the cease of new oil and gas development in their region.

Chemung, Delaware, Duchess, Madison, Montgomery, Niagara, Orange, Rensselaer, Schoharie, Sullivan, Tompkins Counties, NY
EHP has worked in the state of New York since 2014, serving residents in 12 communities. 10 of these communities hosted compressor stations that were slated for expansion or were anticipating new compressor station development. One of these communities successfully negotiated with the pipeline company to upgrade equipment to reduce dangerous pollutants.